Adding Holistic Life to Classrooms

Children understand very well that in each woman, in each man, in each child, there is capacity of waking up, of understanding, and of loving. Many children have told me that they cannot show me anyone who does not have this capacity. Some people allow it to develop, and some do not, but everyone has it. This capacity of waking up, of being aware of what is going on in your feelings, in your body, in your perceptions, in the world, is called Buddha Nature, the capacity of understanding and loving. Smiling is very important. If we are not able to smile, then the world will not have peace. It is not by going out for a demonstration against nuclear missiles that we can bring about peace. It is with our capacity of smiling, breathing, and being peace that we can make peace. ~Thich Nhat Hanh from Being Peace

Heartening experiencing kids so troubled and disadvantaged turning it around from near-certain future of darkness: likely dropout, gang-initiated even incarceration, towards a real potential of lightness and much more ease. Despite the single mother’s best efforts she could not be a father to her troubled teen. Teacher’s offered their best effort among their other duties of being a social worker, conflict resolver and well, teaching. But having skilled role models offer guidance of ancient methods for finding the sunshine hidden behind the inner clouds. Letting the experienced ones then lead the younger, inexperienced. Radically shifting social, economic and environmental despair into calm breaths, less agitated minds and passing grades. Thank you to those who volunteer in classrooms during and after school to make the difference in children’s lives and give them hope.

Above is a clip of the young adults known as the Holistic Life Foundation describing how they have introduced yoga, meditation and mindfulness into inner Baltimore, MD schools. Filmed at the mindfulness in education conference this year. More about them and the conference at .


21 thoughts on “Adding Holistic Life to Classrooms

  1. janyasilad

    This is truly amazing!
    “Radically shifting social, economic and environmental despair into calm breaths, less agitated minds and passing grades.”
    I could feel that ‘impact’ radiating 😀

    1. smilecalm Post author

      thank you for your kind words of support
      for paying attention to what’s important
      and taking actions to provide wise guidance
      to children of all ages 🙂

  2. Thomas Peace (author)

    Before i retired (as a teacher for the multiply handicapped), i made sure to teach far more than the 3 R’s. Unfortunately, a lot of teachers are, themselves, the result of a superficial education. 😉 Namaste!

  3. Vicki

    Such a wonderful and inspiring way to being peace and calm into our young ones lives. Education isn’t just about the 3 R’s. It’s about sharing, team work and helping them to go on to make a difference in the community as young adults. Instilling a sense of self awareness, tolerance and calm can only start from the ground up.

  4. Tom McCubbin

    It must be really tough to teach kids, especially in California, when life is changing so abruptly and no one knows the survival skills they require for the new society coming. I always wonder to myself what these little ones will become, how they will survive, unless, of course, they have they ability themselves to transform society into something more human. Great quote from Hanh!

  5. Genie

    School is so boring and spiritually suffocating, it’s terrific too see this alternative to add new paradigms to the educational institutions.

  6. bruce thomas witzel

    Inspiring David. I love that on the top of the list of the “Holistic Me” program is mindfulness and yoga. Though I don’t practice yoga, I do work at mindfulness. I am soon heading to work so I will look at the video later, when I can enjoy it fully. As always, I love the Thay’s quote – I’ll be heading out the door smiling. With peace and and gratitude – Bruce

    1. smilecalm Post author

      thank you for your kind insight, Bruce. as the group says
      yoga is not just a series of poses
      it’s a way of living in balance
      so i think you do a type of yoga!


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